2017 was another eventful year for Motherwell. We changed managers, flirted with relegation, reached a major cup final and cashed in on our top striker. The fan owned club is in good shape as we enter 2018.
The winter break ended with a cup and league double with Rangers. We lost the cup game by conceding, in McGhee’s words, “a ludicrous goal” but we were to get our revenge by the year end at Hampden.
A late Moult goal saw us safe
Brill and Laing left while Griffiths, Jules and Frear arrived. Pearson returned for his third spell at the club.
A win in Dingwall was to be our only joy as we built a string of losses that ran into March. Mark McGhee was sacked at the end of February after four consecutive defeats that included 7-2 at Pittodrie and 5-1 to Dundee at Fir Park. Stephen Robinson was given temporary control of the team.
The threat of a play-off hung over the club through spring as poor form continued.
Match officials became blind to our ball crossing the goal line – three times!
We had a bottom six battle to avoid eleventh place but wins in Hamilton in front of a big ‘Well support and against Kilmarnock led us to safety and finally ninth place. Inverness were in the automatic relegation spot and Accies survived the play-off.
No happy faces
Off the park the ‘Well Society continued to grow and the coffers began to swell as monthly pedgers increased. Les Hutchison agreed to match income with as Double your Money scheme.
James McFadden left the club and Keith Lasley inherited the assistant’s job. McManus ended his playing career in August to join the coaching staff and Craigan continued to look after the U20s.
The manager wasted no time in refreshing his squad in preparation for the new season. Before the middle of June Rose, Bigirimana, Fisher, Carson and Tanner had signed and fans had a first look when we took on Stirling Albion for the first friendly on 1 July.